Linda S. Behar-Horenstein, Alice C. Dix, Kellie W. Riberts and Melissa L. Johnson
In this chapter, the authors describe the findings of three recent studies focusing on the mentoring of undergraduate honors’ science scholars and the students’ research and course experiences. In the first study, they explain students’ expectations of the mentoring process, what students hoped to learn and what skills they hoped to develop under the guidance of mentors. Also described are the mentoring professors’ goals and what skills they hoped students would acquire. In the second study, the authors expound on the mentoring and learning that took place among students midway through their first year. Additionally, they explain the mentoring that professors provided and their assessment of what students learned. The final study illustrates the students’ experiences in an introductory course that was designed to encourage their entry into guided and independent research activities. The findings of these studies add to a research base on undergraduate science research experiences that historically have been primarily quantitative. Qualitative methods are used to portray students’ and professors’ voices as this university culture begins to shape students’ abilities to think like scientists.